Tony Iommi Looks Back To His Friendship With Robert Plant And John Bonham While Explaining How His Hometown Affected His Music
Black Sabbath lead guitarist Tony Iommi opened up about the time when he started out making music in his hometown, Birmingham, both with struggles and perks, in addition to revealing the relationship he had between Led Zeppelin lead singer Robert Plant and late drummer John Bonham back when all of them were in Birmingham.
As many of you might already know, Tony Iommi was born and raised in Birmingham and attended Birchfield Road School, where future bandmate, Black Sabbath frontman Ozzy Osbourne was also a student one year behind him.
Just like every artist is influenced by the place they were raised in, one way to another, Tony Iommi opened up the experience he had while trying to make music in his hometown during an interview with Westside BID. Apparently, Black Sabbath struggled back in the days since their music was not common due to the fact that soul was the popular genre. However, they all believed in the music they were making and pushed through the obstacle by playing in every place they could.
Here is what Iommi said:
“Very, very tough because in those days the music we played wasn’t about – nobody was hearing anything like it. So consequently, we couldn’t get gigs, we played in blues clubs. And Jim Simpson helped us a lot then because he had a club and we used to play there.
And we used to play around Birmingham, but it was limited where we could play in those days because most of the music around then was soul. Of course, when we started playing our own sort of music, then it was difficult, and we had a tough road ahead.
But we believed in our music, and the whole thing for us is we loved what we did, and we believed in what we did, and there was no internet and no TV as a source that we can get on, so you had to do it by playing in these little pockets in the cities – clubs – to get known.”
In addition to his own band, Iommi, seemingly, has a special affection for those who walked the same path he did as he revealed that he still is in touch with Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant who is also from Birmingham. Tony also stated that late Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham was a close friend of his and the two used to hang out a lot, going to clubs and walking around the streets which shows how much Iommi loved being there with fellow musicians back then
Here is what Tony said:
“Absolutely. People from Birmingham at that time as well, we stayed in touch with some of them. Robert Plant is from Birmingham, of course.
John Bonham was a very good friend of mine, and we used to go around the streets together, to clubs, it was quite funny. And a lot of the bands from those days – ELO, The Move… There were some great bands; the music in Birmingham was really good then.”
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